Bouchra Baibanou: Moroccan Mountaineer - Genevieve Hathaway

Bouchra Baibanou: Moroccan Mountaineer

Overview Of Project

Bouchra Baibanou - First Moroccan to Climb the 7 Summits

Bouchra Baibanou, a software engineer from Rabat, completed the 7 Summits in December 2018, becoming the first Moroccan to climb the world's tallest peak on each continent.  She hopes to use this project to continue inspiring young Moroccan women to dream big and accomplish their goals.  Bouchra also runs boot camps for young women and girls in Morocco – helping them build self-confidence and empowerment through the outdoors and trekking.


As part of my Women Rising project, I spent the past 4 years documenting Bouchra's journey from Morocco to summitting the world's tallest peaks.  This  project documents her journey to become the first Moroccan to climb all 7 Summits and her mission to bring about greater gender equality in Morocco through inspiring and helping more women participate in adventure sports.  Bouchra is making history and breaking through glass ceilings. I am documenting her journey through a mix of portraits, photo essays, audio interviews and articles.

Preparing for Departure

Congratulations Bouchra! On December 16, 2018 she summited Mt. Vinson in Antarctica becoming the first Moroccan to complete the 7 Summits!


From the ancient medinas of Morocco to the towering peaks of the 7 Summits – Bouchra Baibanou has made history and shattered gender barriers to become the first Moroccan to complete the 7 Summits. On December 16, 2018, she battled frostbite and the Antarctica winds to summit Mt. Vinson and complete the 7 Summits.  A software engineer from Rabat, Bouchra first fell in love with mountaineering while climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. After 8 years of pushing through boundaries, she completed the last of the 7 Summits. Beyond breaking the glass ceiling of mountaineering in Morocco, Bouchra also empowers women through her workshops, bootcamps and public speaking. She is pushing for greater gender equality and helping women believe in themselves, reach goals, and get outside hiking and climbing.


Follow Bouchra's journey below.


Bouchra Baibanou Prepares for Her Last Climb - Mt. Vinson

Preparing to Depart for Antarctica and Climbing Mt. Vinson (last of her 7 Summits)


Before she headed to Antartica to climb Mt. Vinson, I visited Bouchra Baibanou at her home for a photo shoot and to talk more about her climb of Mt. Everest and upcoming journey to Mt. Vinson. We discussed the challenges she faced on Mt. Everest, standing on top of the world, seeing other climbers die on the mountain, getting frost bite and how he refocused for Mt. Vinson.


See the photos and read the story.


From Everest to Vinson

Bouchra Baibanaou, Morocco’s First Female Mountaineer Summits Mt. Everest


I  recently recorded another podcast interview with Bouchra to talk life, climbing, empowering women and her nearly complete 7 Summits project as she recently successfully summitted Mt. Everest. Bouchra Baibanou, a software engineer from Rabat, is on track to summit the “7 Summits” having just completed her second to last climb – the infamous Mt. Everest. This is the story of one determined woman not giving up on her dream. She is using mountaineering to show women in Morocco that they can be anything they set their minds to. She is inspiring a younger generation of Moroccan women to challenge societal norms and strive to accomplish big goals.


[Photo credit: Bouchra Baibanou]


This interview was for ArchaeoAdventures' Women Changemaker Series.


Listen to Bouchra's interview here.


Bouchra Baibanou sets her sights on Mt. Everest. (2015)


Bouchra is working her way through the 7 Summits and wants to be the first Arab woman to ski to both poles. She currently has her sights set on summiting Mt. Everest. She is using mountaineering to show women in Morocco that they can be anything they set their minds to. She is inspiring a younger generation of Moroccan women to challenge societal norms and strive to accomplish big goals.


This podcast interview was conducted prior to her summitting Mt. Everest.  It was for ArchaeoAdventures' Women Changemaker Series.


Listen to the podcast interview below:


In 2015, I interviewed and photographed Bouchra Baibanou for the Outdoor Women's Alliance. 


Though Baibanou may seem like an everyday lady – mother, wife, middle–aged woman who works full time — she has tremendous focus, drive and tenacity. I recently talked with Baibanou, discussing her becoming Morocco’s first female mountaineer and leading adventure woman.


You can read my full interview here.



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